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Juvenile Justice - LGBTI

Transgender individuals are those whose “gender identity” – their personal sense of being male or female – does not match the sex they were assigned at birth. Some transgender people describe this as feeling as if they have been born into the “wrong body” … Juvenile justice professionals need to know that the failure to provide proper treatment for this condition not only can cause serious health problems for transgender children, it can lead to legal liability for detention facilities (p. 1).

The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) and other "changes in law and policy have created new expectations of juvenile justice personnel. Implementation of these new requirements, however, varies widely across the country and has created a demand for clear professional guidance. This practice guide is a response to that demand and: provides an overview of key concepts and terminology related to SOGIE; summarizes the research on the effect of stigma and bias on the health and well-being of LGBT youth, the drivers contributing to their disproportionate involvement in the justice system and the harmful and unfair practices to which they are subjected in the system; identifies policies and procedures to prohibit discrimination, prevent harm and promote fair and equitable treatment of LGBT youth who are arrested and referred to juvenile justice agencies; and provides guidance on policies and practices required to ensure the safety and well-being of LGBT youth in detention facilities" (p. 5). Sections contained in this practice guide include: introduction-lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth in the United States, and the purpose of this publication; understanding sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression (SOGIE); profile of LGBT youth in the juvenile justice system; creating a fair, inclusive, and respectful organizational culture; and detention standards regarding equal and respectful treatment, safety, privacy and dignity, and qualified medical and behavioral health care.


Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth in the Juvenile Justice System Cover

Many juvenile justice systems don't know how many young people in their system identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) and often lack appropriate policies that meet their unique needs … This webinar discussed the need for agency policies to support LGBT young people in the juvenile justice system. Participants learned how the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services [DYS] and Santa Clara County Probation Department [SCCPD] developed policies for LGBT youth in their system, as well as different strategies for creating similar policies in state- and county-based systems (website). This zip file contains: SCCPD Stakeholder Invitation; SCCPD Transgender Procedure Guidelines; SCCPD Transgender Preference Form; SCCPD Cultural Competence Form; Santa Clara, County Counsel Memorandum; Massachusetts DYS Official Policy; and presentation slides.

LGBT Youth in Juvenile Justice: Creating Agency Policies for an Equitable System Webinar cover

This report focuses on LGBTQ [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer or questioning] youth who become involved in the commercial sex market to meet basic survival needs, describing their experiences with law enforcement, the criminal justice system, and the child welfare system. Interviews with these youth reveal that over 70 percent had been arrested at least once, with many reporting frequent arrest for “quality-of-life” and misdemeanor crimes other than prostitution offenses. Youth described their experiences of being cycled in and out of the justice system as highly disruptive and generating far-reaching collateral consequences ranging from instability in the home and school to inability to pay fines and obtain lawful employment. This report is part of a larger three-year Urban Institute study of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer or questioning (LGBTQ) youth; young men who have sex with men (YMSM); and young women who have sex with women (YWSW) engaged in survival sex. Sections of this report cover: highlights; literature review; study goals and methodology; LGBTQ youth interactions with and perspectives of law enforcement—youth demographics, what type of interactions, whom do youth turn to when in trouble, and concluding thoughts; criminal justice system responses to LGBTQ youth, YMSMS, and YWSW—LGBTQ affirming policies and practices, the challenges the criminal justice system must face in addressing this population, what stakeholders need to better serve theses youth, and the role the criminal justice system must play for LGBTQ youth engaged in survival sex; child welfare stakeholder perspectives—how the child welfare system responds to these youth; and the role the child welfare system faces addressing this population; LGBTQ youth perspectives on child welfare; LGBTQ youths' experiences in the child welfare system, perspectives on these experiences, concluding thoughts; discussion and summary; policy and practice recommendations; and how these agencies can be improved according to young people.

Locked In: Interactions with the Criminal Justice and Child Welfare Systems for LGBTQ Youth, YMSM, and YWSW Who Engage in Survival Sex Cover

Youths’ sexual orientations and gender identities are complex. Youths experience an ongoing process of sexual development as they mature into young adults. Adolescence presents a time in people’s lives when they are unsure of themselves and begin to question who they are … Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youths may present unique challenges in the juvenile justice system. Research has shown that LGBTQ youths are more likely to confront certain barriers and environmental risk factors connected to their sexual orientations and gender identities (p. 1). This literature review is an excellent introduction to issues surrounding LGBTQ juvenile offenders. Sections of this document include: definitions; the number of LGBTQ youth in the juvenile justice system; risk and protective factors; LGBTQ youth in the juvenile justice system; outcome evidence; recommendations to reform policies and practices; and conclusion.

LGBTQ Youths in the Juvenile Justice System Cover

The purpose of this paper is to report new national data on the over-representation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, questioning, gender nonconforming, and transgender youth in the juvenile justice system and to provide recommendations for key justice stakeholders on how to best serve these youths (p. 27). The report abbreviates lesbian, gay, bisexual, questioning, gender non-conforming and transgender as LGBTQ/GNCT.

This is a 24-hour training covering the national Prison Rape Elimination Act Standards and implications for responding to the different needs of boys, girls and gender non-conforming youth who are sexually abused in custody. The following are the goals of this training: (1) review the applicable PREA Standards for responding to sexual abuse in custody and their gender impact; (2) review the dynamics of custodial sexual abuse for boys, girls and gender non-conforming youth; (3) identify the components of adolescent development and sexuality and understand their impact on sexual abuse of youth; (4) discuss immediate and long-term medical and mental health care needs of youthful victims of sexual abuse; and (5) identify legal, investigative and other implications and strategies of responding to custodial sexual abuse … NOTE: BJA is currently undergoing a comprehensive review of this curriculum for official approval. Use of this curriculum, either in part or in whole, does not guarantee that an auditor will find a facility “meets standards” in regards to compliance. Modules comprising this training program are: Training Objectives; The Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003; Vectors of Sexual Abuse in Custody-- Gender, Sexuality, and Victimization; Adolescent Development; Adolescent Sexuality; Impact of Culture-- Agency and Youth; Gender, Victimization and Vulnerable Youth; State Criminal Laws; Policy; Medical and Mental Health of Victims in Custody; Operational Practices; Gender Implications for Investigations; Human Resources and the Impact of Gender; and Legal Liability and Gender. In addition to an Instructor's Guide are a Pre-training Checklist, a PowerPoint presentations and handouts (if available) for each module.

Responding to Sexual Abuse of Youth in Custody: Responding to the Needs of Boys, Girls and Gender Non-Conforming Youth Cover

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, or LGBT, youth continue to be significantly over-represented in the nation’s juvenile justice system, even as overall rates of youth incarceration are on the decline … This brief [explains] what works for LGBT youth by outlining the critical components of model juvenile justice policies that are already being implemented around the country and offers sample language that all jurisdictions can adopt (p. 1-2). Sections of this publication cover: LGBT youth experience high rates of discrimination and abuse; model policies exist and are working; nondiscrimination provisions—nondiscrimination and gender presentation; screening and intake; classification and housing placement—limits on isolation and segregation of LGBT youth, placement decisions based on gender identity, and classification decisions based on individualized assessment; confidentiality; privacy and safety of transgender youth; respectful communication-- no demeaning language, and preferred name and pronoun use; access to LGBT supports; medical and mental health services and treatment-- specific medical and mental health care needs of transgender youth, counseling should not try to change LGBT identity, sex-offender treatment, and provide appropriate medical and mental health care; staff training and policy dissemination; youth education and policy dissemination; and enforcement. These policy guidelines reflect the best practices already in place around the country. All jurisdictions should adopt similar measures to ensure that LGBT youth under the supervision of the juvenile justice system are treated fairly, are free from harm, and receive the supportive treatment and services they deserve (p. 13).

Restoring Justice: A Blueprint for Ensuring Fairness, Safety, and Supportive Treatment of LGBT Youth in the Juvenile Justice System Cover

This study surveyed youth in seven juvenile detention facilities. Results show that lesbian, gay, bisexual, questioning (LGBQ) or gender nonconforming and transgender (GNCT) youth in the juvenile justice system are at least three times more likely to have been removed from their home than straight and gender conforming youth and at least five times more likely to be placed in a group or foster home compared with straight and gender conforming youth (p. 245).

This report and graphical executive summary examines how LGBTQ youth who are incarcerated in juvenile detention and correctional facilities face bias in adjudication, and mistreatment and abuse in confinement facilities. LGBTQ youth also lack supportive services when leaving the criminal and juvenile justice systems, often forcing them back into negative interactions with law enforcement. Given that nearly 40% of incarcerated girls in identify as LGB and 85-90% of incarcerated LGBTQ youth are youth of color, it is crucial that any effort to change the way youth in the United States engage with the juvenile justice system must consider the unique experiences of LGBTQ youth. This spotlight report highlights the experiences of LGBTQ youth incarcerated in the juvenile justice system.

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